She Thought He Was Perfect—Then She Checked Out the Girls He Was Checking Out

Comments

1

One other thought, that may or may not be pertinent:

Most porn is free nowadays, and most free porn is off the teen and/or fauxcest variety, (i.e. step mom's, step sons, step cousins (???)). It's weird, porn stars seem to go straight from barely legal to married-bored-housewives. I wonder why none of them enjoy being single in their 20s.... And from what I've read a lot of those 25 year olds porn stars will play teen or house mom, depending on their looks and makeup. So teens may not be actual teens, and bored horny step moms may not actually be bored horny housewives. I know, shocking.

Anyway, the point is there's a lot of guys like me who are just cheap, and go to tube sites looking for whatever. Do I seek out fauxcest or teen porn? Hell no, and many times I wish they'd just return to the old stupid pizza plumber tropes.

But that's it, they're stupid tropes and easy to ignore. You fast forward through dialogue and hope there's some actual chemistry between the performers.

Anyway, this doesn't mean she should ignore his porn browsing history. If it's exclusively teen stuff, then yeah, maybe she should have that discussion. But if it's mixed in with other stuff, he may just be surfing for free porn the same way the majority of us straight guys do it.

2

Quick one here. As stated above & in advice, teenagers doesn't mean children (unless it does, but your letter didn't say that).

When I look at porn, I actively try to avoid seeing young people but it comes up all the time. 18-19 year olds mostly (probably the actors are older, but that's often what it's tagged as) even though that's not what I'm looking for. This tells me two things- first that guys like to look at young women. Whatever, I've learned to accept it even though I think 18 year old boys are gross to look at in this phase of my life. Second that regardless of what you are actually trying to find, you are going to be thrown young people. And sometimes what you are looking for is not necessarily what you search for and vice versa. For example, one way to get older looking men in my own porn searches has been to look for hairy guys, muscle guys, beard guys, bears, etc. I'm not necessarily into hairy guys, just something I search for so I don't end up with young men that look like they could be my nephew. But if I were to go where the clicks take me, I'm always just a skip and jump away from Barely Legal Teen Gets Pounded. Straight porn just skews towards pretend 19 year olds who are overwhelmed by and desperate for a man's dick.

You didn't say if he was searching exclusively for 19 year old brunettes or if that's just what mostly is in his history. If it's the latter, again that's probably what just comes up the most. If it's the former- if that's what he's actively searching for- he could just have a type. Given he's in his early 50s, I'd think Princess Leia before I'd think OMG his daughter.

3

I look at porn featuring 18, 19, and 20 year olds (as well as 30 and the occasional 40-year olds). I am happily married, and I am intensely bonded with and attracted to my partner, who looks nothing like the “teenagers” in the porn I consume and has never wanted for my devoted attention, no matter what I might look at. Focus on your relationship and don’t judge his desires, unless those desires interfere with your relationship. Don’t punish his openness with judgment.

4

I'd also like to note that, depending how far back in his history you scoured, you probably just caught a glimpse of something he was interested that day or week. Lord knows my taste in porn is pretty fucking varied and, depending on my mood, you could think I have a thing for asians, bottomless women, androgynous chicks, hairy, smooth, petite, pawg, or any number of other things that, once opening my laptop, I suddenly want to look at.

So, like the others have said, unless he's looking at illegal things or behaving in a negative manner, take his history with a grain of salt.

5

I second centrist @ 3 and not so sure about EL @ 3 re men always look for younger women when they look at porn, and possibly also men as I think she may be alluding to the gay genre as well.
Just want to mention that the porn universe is also full of older women with younger men, many of them featuring ordinary naturally looking folks who seem to be genuinely into each other.
Some f/f older younger videos seem to touch on lesbian age play, though probably cater mostly for men.

6

"Was he 'sliding into their DMs,' as the kids said until they heard me say it at which point they promptly stopped saying it?"

Ain't that the truth! Nothing makes my kids' eyes roll back faster than me uttering modern parlance.

7

Worth noting that Mr. Perfect's higher brain slam the eject button and delete his browser history already, so it apparently doesn't object to his reptilian brain's preference. It's worth a conversation.

8

didn't slam.

Can we have post-post editing, please?

9

True as far as it goes, Dan, but can we please stop pretending there's no difference between checking out a brunette teen who wanders past on the street, vs. typing the words "brunette teen" into a search engine?

There's a small matter of intention here, and you're not doing anyone any favors by sweeping it under the rug.

10

Porn is a fantasy. Young, firm beautiful girls are hot and (for me) remind me of the “glory days” of my youth. I would NEVER want to date one or fuck one in real life...that would be a step over the line into weirdness that I would prefer not to take. But love to look at them online. I like the occasional MILF porn as well, but hey, I’ve got THAT in real life. As long as your guy doesn’t show any signs of skeevisness like drooling over your daughter or her friends, and seems to be firmly grounded in reality, I’d say accept as the fantasy that it should be.

11

Dear lw,
If you are reading the comments, please take a second look at DonnyKlicious @10.

12

Dude, at 53 you shouldn't still be doing stupid shit like sharing your porn history with your woman. Nothing good will come of it.

13

It's a lot easier to find beautiful young people fucking on the internet than it is to find beautiful older people fucking on the internet.

14

@12 In my late 20's, I already have an open view for my partner if she chooses to look. I'm also pretty open about the random shit that I'm into so she's never really been paranoid about it.

Moral? Don't listen to Daddy.

15

@13 wins the internet, as I'm sure the youth have stopped saying now.

@9 Yeah, I thought Dan came off over-defensive with the number of column inches spent talking about lizard brain immediate autonomic reactions. The guy can voluntarily choose to look at this without being a creep.

Though if all he's looking at is this selected type, then there would be a conversation I'd need to have. Is this just where his erotic imagination came of age and kind of stayed there, diverging from his live sexual interest? Or is this an unfulfilled need that's growing as he feels the pull of what he never had? Both happen...

16

@9 Mind you, I understand that I'm still young, but I still have to err on my post. I'm a decade past teens and a lot my favorite pornstars are approximately my own age (and still sometimes called teens despite being well into their 20's) but sometimes I feel like looking at younger looking women (ie. Some of my other favorite pornstars). Might this be too much 20 years from now? Idk. But I can assume that there is a large portion of men who don't grow out of being attracted to younger women.

I mean, for the love of Christ, I had a furry period in my early 20's, we should not be assuming someone's sexuality via even a string of porn searches.

17

You gonna go to an internet comment section for advice, you gonna get some bad advice, and here's it is from me: dig into his porn history more!

If you just bumped into a young brunette and speed-quit out of the browser, go back and see the whole landscape. You might, very likely, get the picture that glossy pseudoteens are just what the het porn machine vends. Or you might find he has a specific brunette type... sorry.

18

@13 Sure as hell depends on the fetish. There are definately fetishes that I've enjoyed since a young man (Bi MMF and Cuck [ironically, forced bi cuck is not something that I'm]) in my own teens, that are not catered to young folks. I'm mostly assuming it has to do with the openness of society to differential kinks but still. I have watched some older bodies do things that I wish much younger bodies were doing.

Thank God for Hump! otherwise I'd have gone completely insane.

19

@17 I agree but perhaps consider having him actually there this time. You haven't given us any evidence that he's abusive or manipulative so I have to assume he's most likely on the up and up. Honestly, it seems like a safe median. Let him explain his kinks, his regemands, and maybe you can be more comfortable with the relationship.

Also, Dan makes the point of the young waiter but it still doesn't deal with the major difference between male and female sexuality: testosterone is fucked beyond belief. Look at the transformation process for ftm trans people. They'll tell you everything you need to know when it comes to men who don't have control over their hormones. But, from a basic level, I really think we need to consider men as very non-discriminatory when it comes to age and their kink type. Some may say they are but they're lying. Of course, unless they're asexual.

20

@14: Ok, champ, but what good came of it? That she's no longer paranoid?

Lol, if you're doing it to prevent her from hassling you, then you're just eliminating a negative rather than adding something positive. Dumping her would be a much better way to do that.

21

Is he attractive for his age? Or is he an average or less than average 53-year-old man? Is he the type where a young woman would swoon over him for a daddy hang up fling?

I don’t have the faith that Dan does in men. I think men with an active libido night cheat of the right Chance came along. What would you do about it, LW?

22

MIA, your partner enjoys watching twenty-something year-old women have sex, that doesn't mean he would rather be partnered with your daughter or your daughter's friends. Comparing yourself to your daughter or daughter's friends will be maddening. Let this go.

Absent troubling behavior in someone's day-to-day interactions, I think there is little value in unpacking their erotic imagination. Even if the erotic images we watch could be used a predictive tool to our behavior, which they are not, anyone person's viewing habits are skewed by the porn that is most easily accessible. Pertinent to this case, many women in the adult film industry get into that business between ages 18 and 21, and will exit the business after a few years. So there are fewer actresses who have the longevity to be filming scenes at age 30, let alone age 40 or above. But there are some women who did get into the adult film industry at age 18, and have continuously filmed scenes for the past 20 years, so there is evidence that people will continue to be attracted to these performers as they age, and that factors other than age contribute to women leaving the industry. Moreover, while some actresses are 18 or 19, many of these so-called teens are well into their 20s.

As to what is acceptable in real life, we arbitrarily call 18 year-olds adults, after which they get to make their own decisions. I don't see any benefit sitting back in judgment deciding what age pairings are permissible and which merit condemnation. I would recommend that no one waste their lives in an unfruitful search for younger partners, but everyone gets to make their own choices in life, wise or unwise.

23

First up MIA, do not say anything to this man.
If you’ve been together for two years, hasn’t he been round your daughter and her friends? If he was lascivious and leering at them, you would have noticed and / or your daughter would have said something to you.

24

I couldn't help but notice that @Dan suggests fantasizing about a deceased actor. About 10 years ago, I recall Dan providing advice to someone who was still masturbating to the images of a dead model / actress. At the time, Dan suggested that we fantasize about these people because we live in hope that no matter how small the odds we might actually get to have sex with them. However, once they have died, that fantasy can only go unfulfilled, which turns a life-affirming act into something hollow, so we should only fantasize about living people. That view suggests a degree of intent or specific desire when watching porn, which I don't think is correct, and it appears that Dan himself might have changed his views in this regard, both in whether this activity should be discouraged and the origins of our interest in watching porn.

25

The day my wife comes across my porn search history and all she finds is ‘brunette teen’ is the day I fall to my knees and give thanks.
Provided there’s no other creepy behaviour this seems like a very middle of the road interest. I’m honestly pretty surprised by some of the comments.

26

I don’t watch porn LW, I create it in my head. Given the grief some people get, mainly men, re what they watch on screen, I think my way keeps it all as my business.
I often have younger men join me, in my mind, and why not. No waiting around for pills to kick in.
If this man did want to go after younger women, irl, he would not have let you see his computer searches. Just let it go, because to make an issue of it could make him feel uncomfortable around your daughter and things might go south for your relationship with him. They are his fantasies, his private erotic world, so forget what you saw, never check again, and leave him with it.

27

Three thoughts: just because the title of the video says "teen" doesn't mean the people involved actually are teens. And it's hard to watch porn (I'm assuming he's on a pornhub type site) without coming across tons of "teen" videos (or "step-mother" or "mother" videos).

LW should also realize that most porn is just acting. The people involved in it are playing a role. Your BF knows this. This is part of what makes porn "safe."

My kids are both teenagers. I've often been around their friends and girlfriends. And it doesn't even cross my mind to consider their friends as sexual beings. They're just kids. My sons' friends. Your BF no doubt reacts to "real" kids the same way. Ask him (don't "corner him") and he'll tell you this. You'll feel reassured.

28

MIA, your guy doesn’t feel shame about what arouses him, don’t bring that down on him. It’s not kids not animals not throat cutting or any violence. And young women are beautiful, blossoming flowers. I love seeing young healthy women, full of life and energy. Their perky breasts are not on my mind, I can see why they could be on some minds, in fantasyLand.
Don’t sabotage your happiness over this.
Let us know when the wedding is.

29

I agree with the people who say "check it out a little more." If literally all he has is teenagers, then maybe that's an eyebrow-raiser. But it's entirely possible that it was just the whim du jour, and really not something he's that interested in.

Just because someone ordered a dish once doesn't mean that they're obsessed with it - or even that fond of it.

30

Dan, you buried the lede on this one. MIA is clearly worried that her boyfriend's desire for young women will translate to inappropriate behaviour towards her daughter. (And it's probably not safe to assume she sometimes finds young guys hot; this is not a universal female thing, so if she doesn't, appealing to an "everybody does it" argument won't work.) You could have called her attention to the guy who only looks at furry porn but who doesn't want his wife to dress in a fur suit to show that people's porn preferences and real-life preferences often differ. And to make the point that his porn tastes could have been MUCH worse than vanilla, heterosexual, young women! I'd be relieved to discover porn that pedestrian, which is probably why he had no desire to hide it. Talk to your man, as Dan says; perhaps buy some dark brown hair dye, and be grateful his tastes are so mainstream.

30

if ALLLLL hes looking at is teenage brunettes id probably be concerned and im not a jealous person in a healthy adult agreement. i might be healous is a non healthy interaction but i put my foot down quickly. most guys are more prone to go younger than even women go. if thats the totaity of his schtick its probably an issue or if it makes her insecure and she tells him there needs to be boundary agreements in and off limits. if he agrees, great, but past behavior presicta future behavior ao he'll eventually resort to his preference. i hope hes not an agist. a discussion should be had about the extent of his goto and the practicality and sustainability of a more well rounded mix. if no its time to go--one or the other

31

Some great advice from porn users here, and Lava. Maybe he just likes brunettes, and when he searches for brunettes, 18-year-old brunettes appear. Makes perfect sense. I remember a friend of mine once worked in an adult video store (remember those?), and told me that a man came in asking if they had any porn that -didn't- include anal, and she said, no. Does this man ogle young women when you are out and about? If not, you have no problem.

Dadddy @12, he didn't share his porn history with her. He merely said he didn't think it shocking enough to hide. She still made the choice to snoop instead of letting him have his privacy.

Mtn @17: I agree, that is bad advice. If she's that freaked out by something so vanilla, what good could delving further possibly accomplish? Is their sex life good, yes/no. Does he behave inappropriately toward the college-age waitress, yes/no. If the answers are Yes and No respectively, why should she look for reasons to fuck up this great relationship?

Misanthrope @21: I don't think "looks at vanilla porn" is a good predictor of cheating, and I don't think there is anything to be gained by putting that idea into her head. He's 53. Has he cheated in past relationships? That's a much better question to ask if she's worried he'll cheat.

32

Also, I am so old that I had never heard of "sliding into someone's DMs" and my mind went right to, how is it sexy to wear someone else's Doc Martens? :)

33

DTDFA!

34

MIA I dunno about women, but as men age we don't stop being attracted to young adult women. (It's a biological reality that young adults are at their peak of health.) But thoughts and fantasies have no, are not about, reality, and they are not actions. Things people only think/fantasize about do no harm. This is a foundation of modern society: thoughts are never crimes. The only concerning thing about your letter is: how could you not get all this?

35

Ms Fan makes me think of Miss Marple's friends the Bantrys. Arthur sometimes turns fatuous and avuncular around pretty girls who come to play tennis, but Dolly, instead of ogling the fishmonger's assistant on his bicycle, claims that, after all, she has the garden.

As for Mr Savage, one does wonder, given how dedicated he is to presenting an appearance that at least correlates strongly with the desire to appear nineteen, when he really last actually boinked a nineteen-year-old. Being in a generous mood, I'll guess that it was when he finally stopped pretending to be 28 (or was it 27?). I also note that he only admits to attraction to people ranging in age up to his peers and there's at least a hint that men older than he is are "Objectively" Not Hot (although he has given at least lip service to the viewpoint that women can be hot at any age), but this from the partner of someone into at least one older man (shades of Emma's calling her own being charming, as attributed to her by Harriet, insufficient grounds to marry - "I must find other people charming; one other, at least.").

I'm not sure that it matters, but the letter was unclear as to whether "checking out" constituted "looking at" or "searching for". That last section is not a good one for LW. There's a hint that she wouldn't object if BF were looking at young blondes, although one can make allowances for a mother's natural anxiety. But is she seriously asserting that ALL her daughter's brunette friends are beautiful? (This redoubles my appreciation for Ms Erica's ability to mention Miss Erica without purportedly objective praise.) If so, then the meaning of the word has been diluted well beyond the extent it was so in Miss Austen's time, recalling, "Miss Dashwood had a delicate complexion, regular features, and a remarkably pretty figure. Marianne was still handsomer. Her form, though not so correct as her sister's, in having the advantage of height, was more striking; and her face was so lovely, that when, in the common cant of phrase, she was called a beautiful girl, truth was less violently outraged than usually happens." I am not all that far from telling LW to dump BF for his own good.

I shall now attempt to give Ms Cute the most entertainment she has ever derived from the dreary Edmund Bertram. LW has, in the first heights of alarm, established a myth for herself that BF is only with her in order to have access to her daughter (and perhaps her daughter's friends). This called to mind one of the few points on which Mrs Grant and Mrs Norris actually were of one mind, that Mr Crawford should rightfully come to love and marry Julia. Ms Cute will doubtless recall, after the visit to Sotherton, Fanny's being so bold as to offer a hint to Edmund about Mr Crawford's forward behaviour towards both Bertram sisters.

"What a favourite he is with my cousins!"
"Yes, his manners to women are such as must please. Mrs Grant, I believe, suspects him of a preference for Julia; I have never seen much symptom of it, but I wish it may be so. He has no faults but what a serious attachment would remove."
"If Miss Bertram were not engaged," said Fanny, cautiously, "I could sometimes almost think that he admired her more than Julia."
"Which is, perhaps, more in favour of his liking Julia best, than you, Fanny, may be aware; for I believe it often happens, that a man, before he has quite made up his own mind, will distinguish the sister or intimate friend of the woman he is thinking of, more than the woman herself..."

Even Edmund, however, would not extend the image so far as to the possibility of the uncertain man's going so far as to boink the mother of the woman in whom he was really interested.

36

@34: It is just good old insecurity. He looks at young women, she is not young, cue jealousy and insecurity and using the daughter as a proxy for defense against the reality that it is just her own jealousy and insecurity.

A tale as old as time.

37

I’m shocked, shocked, shocked he didn’t want to watch porn with middle aged womyn who’ve let themselves go.

38

I guess people who don't look at porn don't know how porn works. Often people look at porn for momentary gratification and don't think about it later. For example I sometimes look at rape porn because I want to see the dominance/submission aspect but I never think about rape scenarios otherwise. Similarly a lot of "teen" porn has a dom/sub aspect, one genre for example is "teenage" women (played by actors who are probably/definitely not teenagers) being "seduced" by MILFy lesbians. I don't care how old these people are I just like to see the power imbalance involved. It's like, if you watch a movie about some rich asshole who forces a young stupid woman into a terrible abusive BDSM contract that doesn't mean it's what you want in real life. Hopefully anyway. Also like @1 said "teen" is popular with free porn and it's such a popular category you really can't avoid it. MILF is also an extremely popular category but I doubt everyone who watches it has a fetish for old ladies. The "normal 20-or-30-or-40-something" category doesn't exist.

39

You know the one category of porn you rarely see?

Angry, middle-aged feminist with an extra 50lbs porn.

For some reason that doesn’t appeal to most healthy men.

40

To misquote Tom Waits, we go to porn to "Get you a little something that you can't get at home". Odds are real strong this dude is never going to fuck a, fertile 20 year old and knock her up. But his balls want him to. His whole reproductive system is desperate for one last shot at reproduction before he croaks. But that ain't happening, and he probably does not want it to happen, so whacking off while looking at younger women scratches the itch.

One thing I did not know when I was young is that inside every old person is a teenager who can't figure out why their body looks so strange and doesn't work right anymore. That old man who smiled at you does not think they are a creep, they think they are a 24 year old who people smile back at when they smile. Reality constantly challenges our self perception as we age, but it does not change the fact that we still want to be loved and appreciated even when we are past our sell by date.

41

Oh and #39, I love chubby women and LOVE to dom angry feminists. Any woman who makes it to middle age and isn't angry at the patriarchy is not paying attention, plus they are often very kinky because submission to men is extra transgression and naughty. And afterwards you can have a decent conversation. What's not to like?

42

I wouldn't get married until she understands his flaws. I'm skeptical of the frame of mind of someone in her 50s who can type with a straight face: "He's perfect for me. I'm perfect for him."

Also, if some part of her is actually wondering if he's using her for access to her young-adult daughter (how would that even work?), then I'd advise -- don't get married till you're sure.

43

drjones @40 "One thing I did not know when I was young is that inside every old person is a teenager"

Yep.

44

Just want to weigh in here-
this guy might be totally normal and great, but if you have a beautiful, brunette, 20 year old daughter, make sure you spend just a little time seriously observing the way he talks to her and interacts with her friends.

I would also ask your daughter how she feels about him. From personal experience- the step dad relationship is not sacred and men are all reptiles in some ways.

45

I agree with @42 and @44. Dan is being a bit too blithe.

46

@1 is right no. Porn today, on the major sites, is essentially divided (for non-kink/fetish straight porn) into Teens and MILFs. I've seen one actress, in a period of probably less than a year, play each role in varying scenes.

Secondly... what you like in porn should not be assumed to represent a real desire - more a fantasy. Dan tackled this when talking Vore and other "non-possible" fetishists. I like porn featuring much younger, attractive women. In real life, I don't want to spend time with any 22 year old's, no matter how attractive they are or how hard they want me to fuck them.

47

curious@34 ~ "...The only concerning thing about your letter is: how could you not get all this?.."

Right! LW, you're 53. Have you never realized that MEN WATCH PORN in the last 40 some years? What did you think we are looking at? Hint: It's generally not hedgehogs mating or aged grandmothers humping in their wheelchairs. Generally. At least not regularly (although who doesn't like to check out a little spiky hedgehog orgy every now and then?) And have you ALSO not realized that "perfect for each other" DOESN'T actually mean either one of you IS actually perfect? I don't think this is a "glaring exception" either. Jeez! Over-react much? This letter sounds like it was written by a teen who discovered her teenage boyfriend is watching porn of 53-year old women fucking and is freaking out because she thinks it means he is going to be doing the Mrs. Robinson cha-cha with her mother, not the other way around.

48

@EricaP: "I'm skeptical of the frame of mind...""

Oh that's funny, and spot on. Not hard to imagine this train wrecking in any number of different ways.

49

@31 BiDanFan The calculation isn’t “looks at vanilla porn, will cheat” but “has penis, will cheat.” Especially if the porn doesn’t match what he has in real life.

The rule isn’t 100%, but it’s fair.

50

Let's not forget that the original, biological, built-in PURPOSE of sexual attraction is to encourage reproduction with a suitable (healthy, strong, energetic, etc.) mate. I always give myself a break when I find myself immediately (literally "without mediation") attracted to people who appear to be in their reproductive prime. That's just NORMAL, and nothing to judge anyone for. Now what do you go and DO? How do you BEHAVE? Judge folks by that.

51

It's cool and all to be ggg and not jealous but it's different when it's your man. Own this that it's your insecurity not his pathology. If I still looked at my husband's browser history or let him tell me when he finds someone hot I wouldn't be fucking him. Thinking about it makes me not want to fuck him from spite that doesn't happen when it's women who look like me. I like it when it's women like me and I get irrationally upset when it's any other type of woman. Own it and don't look.

52

I'm just here for the Jon Erik Hexum reference. Loved him as a teen!

53

There are a couple of things that are unclear in LW's letter. She wrote 'he said EARLY ON, in a discussion about porn' that she can look at his computer. How did this even come up? Why would he offer to let her check out his porn? Was she being suspicious about what he watches? Why didn't he just tell her instead of saying he didn't mind if she looked at his computer, like he had to prove he wasn't doing anything she would consider taboo. There's seems to be a bit of moralistic judgment here. Then LW goes to look (!! can't she trust him, her perfect pea in teh same pod?), and is so distressed by what she sees, that she thinks her perfect pea pod might be a ephebephile and she wonders if her daughter and friends are in danger!!

There seems to be other problems here bigger than porn habits. One is that LW sems to think watching porn is wrong, but she is (wants to be) GGG, so she'll ok with letting him watch (but must check out the porn first to make sure he's not watching something that would bother her).
Two is that even though they are peas in the same pod and perfect for each other, she thinks it's possible that he might be dating her to get access to her beautiful 20 y.o. brunette daughter and/or the daughter's "whole lotta brunette girlfriends, All lovely, YOUNG, and beautiful", because she found brunette teen porn on his computer! Umm, does LW think she is old and ugly because she's not 20? Or does she think why would he love me when he can have my daughter? Because it's a huge leap from looking at porn with young actresses to dating a woman to get access to her 20 y.o. daughter! A 20 y.o. is not a helpless teen that an ephebephile would target. Does LW's daughter even live with her? Why would she think her BF would be successful if he tried anything with her daughter or the daughter's friends? Because their reaction would most likely be 'EWW, Get away from me!'

It's possible that LW is right and her man is a creeper, especially if he only searches for 'barely legal' porn or drools at teens as they walk down the street, or stockpile Teens gone Wild vids or constantly compare LW body to younger womens', or has a history of inappropriate sexual behavior, or asks her to dress up as a teen during sex, etc. But LW says they are perfect for each other and her only concern is the brunette teen porn. They've been together for 2 years, planning to get married, and LW suddenly go look in his computer to see what kind of porn he's been watching? Why?

I think there is some other problem here, and the panic about his porn is the symptom, not the disease. LW should figure out what it is. The problem might not even be him, it might be her self image, or how she sees herself as compared to her daughter, or maybe red flags about her perfect man that she is not admitting. And don't get married until it's resolved.

54

Why should she hold off the wedding over this.. it’s a reaction to porn lots of women have. If a man can’t separate fantasy from reality, then yes, the woman has a right to question if his porn use is over influencing him.
MIA you need to work thru this yourself and 🎶Let It Go. His fantasy life is his business as yours is yours. You are a grown woman, you have a daughter so you’ve been with men before, so let him be one.

55

Uggh. I think the porn viewing in this situation is much ado about nothing as well, but all these nasty comments deciding that the woman must be some fat insecure old bitch who is lying about being concerned for her daughter- just uggh.

I agree with Erica that i's probably a part of a wider situation of cold feet / immaturity (yes the perfection stuff raises an eyebrow) since they are discussing marriage, but it is also a real concern of most single moms to worry a bit that the men they date might creep on their children or their children's friends. I agree it seems unlikely here (how would it work indeed) the worst case scenario seems he'd just flirt with these young women which could be gross, and the best way to determine if he'd do that is his past behavior- if nothing has been alarming so far, why worry now? I go with Lava and Donny's advice here- if there is nothing else in his behavior that raises a flag, let it go.

What I think makes the difference is the simple fact that for many women (probably most) teenage boys are not attractive once you are no longer a teenager. So I know objectively that this is not the case for men- that men still find very young women attractive well into their elderly years and I accept that as normal (so long as their behavior is appropriate). But I don't understand it. At all. Like the LW, when I look at very young people, I see lovely, healthy kids with a bright future in a sort of maternal way. Curious says above that people are in prime condition here, I disagree about men. A 25 year old man is almost always better looking than an 18 year old one. The 18 year old is usually still awkward, hasn't filled out yet, more likely to have bad hair, bad skin, not know how to dress properly, etc- this isn't all biological, but he is not nearly so attractive as he will be in a few years. Of course there are women who are into teenagers, but generally speaking, I think it's just sort of a gender norm that men are attracted to very young people (even if they are also attracted to older people) and women are less likely to be attracted to very young people. So it's sort of hard sometimes to understand what men see in teenage girls. Which brings me back to the LW and wraps around with Erica's point and the discussion of porn up above- she does not sound insecure or dishonest about her concerns about daughter or feminist or any of this. She sounds really naive. She's somehow made it to her early 50s without knowing that men find young people attractive? She's naive about porn, about what men find attractive, about being in love with THE ONE who is perfect, etc.

Also @25 was funny.

56

To illustrate what I mean, look back at her actual words:

"I saw that he was checking out brunette teenagers. Teenagers. Now I'm freaked. I don't know how to think about this. It's plaguing me. I have a beautiful brunette daughter, age 20. She has a whole lotta brunette girlfriends. All lovely, young and beautiful. Help me figure out how to put this together with the man I love."

She doesn't say anything at all about comparing her own body to these young women. She doesn't say anything about being concerned that he's going to cheat with a young woman. She doesn't say anything about being concerned that he's going to creep on her daughter or it's a ploy to get to her.

What's happened here is she looks at his history, sees these brunette teenagers and then instantly associates them with all the lovely, young and beautiful brunette women in her life- her daughter, her daughters friends, people she obviously sees maternally. And she's feeling the natural disconnect here, realizing that her soon-to-be husband sees these young brunette women as sexually attractive. She doesn't know how to put this together.

We can discount this as naive (I agree) but surely we can also understand it. It's a pretty common thing for someone to find out their lover is into something that they do not get, and I'd bet it's also pretty common for older women to not understand how older men still look at teenagers and see them sexually. As I said, though I accept it, I don't really understand it either.

Hence Dan's lengthy bit about the reptile brain that some of you say is irrelevant. He is speaking to her confusion here- how she "puts this together with the man I love" - instead of being sidetracked by the porn part like most of us were which is why he has the column and we're the amateurs.

57

As has been said, these women in porn are probably in their twenties, not teens. Young people are attractive, because they have youth. What is the problem here.
Aboriginal people of Australia talk about secret men’s and secret women’s business.
A woman doesn’t need to know what a man watches, if irl he’s a decent human being.

58

I find screen porn problematic for young males. Seeing girls and women on screen before seeing them irl, is not in girls interests. Unless the porn is made ethically. To not have the fumbling and new awakening, because the boy has seen the moves he should do to prove he’s the man and worse expecting a girl to be groaning and carrying on when in truth it takes a while to understand one’s own sexuality physically as a young woman, is a sad loss.
Grown men are different. One expects they are in charge of themselves and have been with enough women to know porn is fantasyLand and not to confuse it with real life. Why a man might get locked into one genre, say young women, is perhaps because when he was a young man, he didn’t / couldn’t/ was too shy/ whatever, to enjoy young flesh when it was available. His erotic self now is re doing his erotic self then. I engage with older men in my fantasies, then often I’m a younger woman. The erotic mind doesn’t have to follow and can’t follow rules of what arouses it, as our sexual selves can’t change our orientation.
Sure, I wouldn’t want to be with a guy who watches kiddie or bestiality porn or some kink porn, with the porn this man watches, blah. His trip. If it’s something he watches while self pleasuring, what is the harm. And if some guy wanted to get me to run the story lines I go thru in my erotic mind, fine with me. Then if he went mad at me for telling him, I wouldn’t be happy.

59

I refuse to read comments that are longer than the original letter and/or Dan's response. As a matter of principle.

60

@47 You should take that question seriously: How DID this LW end up being surprised? Like, what's going on in the world when the blatant messages about who's attractive and who is in porn are being broadcast to us non-stop, broad day right outside, yet somehow she missed it?

My (new) take: She's hep enough to understand that she can't say porn is bad (that's being SWERFY, among other things) - but that's what she really thinks, and this is the take that rationalized her belief without having to identify as an old prude. What do you think the odds are that, when looking at her partners porn habits, it JUST SO HAPPENS TO BE SOMETHING SPECIFIC that is over the line for her?

61

LavaGirl @26 "I often have younger men join me, in my mind, and why not. No waiting around for pills to kick in"

Um. I'm slow ... but... that's a joke, right?

62

I'm late to the party so will basically repeat what's been covered before: the teen category is ridiculous, in part because a star/let might be the teen in one clip and then the MILF in the next clip. As others have stated, I'm not comfortable with that term so I avoid the clips, hoping that my selections might influence categories. Because a "teen" category certainly can imply anyone from 13-19, I would prefer they went with "coed" or "college stud," "sorority girl," "frat boy," or something like that, which would more directly suggest 18+ (I know there are 17 year olds in college, but that's more the exception than the rule).

All of this is to say that the LW's SO is really just looking for younger looking actresses, one can assume, versus looking for actual teenagers. He didn't invent the categories. He's, like the rest of us who view free porn, stuck with the tub sites' categories. It would be nice if people put some pressure on those sites to rename.

63

I do do elaborate scenarios Erica. Yes, it was a joke. Made me laugh.

64

62 comments and no mention of Humbert Humbert?

65

@55 EmmaLiz
"Curious says above that people are in prime condition here, I disagree about men. A 25 year old man is almost always better looking than an 18 year old one."

You're not disagreeing with anything I said. (@34 I wrote "It's a biological reality that young adults are at their peak of health." [actually Tomlinson@50 put it better "in...their prime"]). "Young adult" I think includes both 18 and 25.

But moving to EmmaLiz' point instead of her disagreement with not-me: I guess that in addition to maturing earlier psychologically, women also mature earlier physically. (Honestly I think even for women it's probably often closer to 25 than to 18.)

66

If our visible porn history were to contain the ultimate secret about what kind of sex we truly want to have in real life, then I'd super into forced bi cuckholding. Thanks, @4 Bloated Jesus.

67

@2 EmmaLiz: I agree that sometimes search terms are used as proxies. For example, searches for petite women, slight men, or small breasts always bring up Barely Legal Teen type stuff unless you add D/MILF or older person tags. The goal isn't necessarily cougar or silver fox, and yet that's what the search looks like because it's the most efficient way to wade through the glut of youths.

68

@42: I think he might want to know that about Letter Writer and her uh, "concern" about him, too. Kind of a red flag regarding the wisdom of a relationship with who regards him with suspicion.

69

Provided he's not acting like a creep around the daughter or her friends, I don't see the problem here. You can't help what you're attracted to, young brunettes are widely regarded as attractive, the porn he's looking at isn't illegal or a red flag, responsible adults can distinguish between what they feel and what they do.

Talk to him about it in a non-confrontational way, just to get some reassurance. But do NOT ask him to change his behavior, or pretend to change his behavior, for your sake (sorry Dan, bum note there). He trusted you to look at his porn viewing, don't reward his transparency by confronting him, punishing him, or trying to control him. That's a terrible precedent to set for the relationship. Work through this on your own, with a therapist or trusted friend, and with occasional (not nonstop) sincere reassurance from him.

70

Yes, Curious @34, if MIA herself does not look at porn or find young men attractive it's pretty obvious how she could not "get" why her boyfriend does. As Theodore @36 says, insecurity. Women over 40 face relentless messages about how they are not desirable (see @37, ahem) and when your own boyfriend seems to confirm this by preferring to look at women a third your age, it's not great for the self esteem.

DrJones @40, great point.

Donny @47: Every other man she's dated probably did her the favour of hiding his porn. Men are great at that, and most women are great at not going looking for what they really don't want to know. She's concerned because she has a daughter who looks like what her boyfriend is jacking off to. A little sympathy please.

Misanthrope @49: Thanks for that bit of projection that is not at all borne out by statistics, but clearly makes you feel better about your own shortcomings. Next.

Iseult @53: Good analysis, but one factor I'd note is that it was two years between when he mentioned he had no issue with her knowing his porn preferences and when she looked. What spurred the belated curiosity? I'm not going to speculate, but I'm sure it has an influence on how she reacted to what she found.

EmmaLiz @55: Amen to your entire post.

RE @64: We've all given this man the benefit of the doubt in assuming the "teenagers" in the videos are 18, not 13, otherwise LW (a) would have mentioned, (b) would not have been invited to view the porn history as it was "nothing to hide", (c) would not have associated them with her 20-year-old daughter. Dude is not a pedo.

Curious @65: Indeed, an 18-year-old woman is fully grown, an 18-year-old man frequently is not.

71

@70 BiDanFan
You're right MIA deserves sympathy. And great points about about society's relentless messaging, and that it's understandable that she can't personally relate to it. (I can also see where women might want to 'block it out'.)

And I can totally see where a very young woman would not "get" this stuff, however...

Long before MIA was 53-years old, wouldn't it have been healthy for her to "get" (as in 'understand' it intellectually, and emotionally accept) it (that's what I meant @34 when I wrote that her letter was "concerning"). I think that as 53-year old person where she is on this indicates an opportunity for some personal growth. (I'm not saying women should try to 'love this about men', just try for their own sake to not be pained at all by it.)

p.s. re: "fully grown"; oh yes, I literally got over an inch (I forget exactly) taller when I was something like 22.

72

Curious sorry that I assumed you were talking about teenagers when you said "young" but since that's the topic, that's the assumption I made. The LW wasn't writing in asking about how her man looks at brunette 25 year olds. But yes of course it's natural for these topics to diverge and generalize so it seems we are not disagreeing. Nonetheless, it is a general pattern (not a rule) that men do tend to find teenagers attractive and women tend not to. It's also a general pattern that everyone finds young people attractive, though "young" is relative as we've discovered.

73

Curious @71: Indeed, that would have been a healthy understanding to have come to earlier in life. I agree that she is naive, but I don't think she should be scolded or mocked for this. Clearly this is something she -wants- to get past. She's not asking for help in how to talk him out of looking at this porn, she's asking for help in reconciling it with the man she previously believed to have no interest in age-inappropriate women. She IS trying to not be pained by it, but finding it difficult because of the association with her daughter.

74

Also yes, usually 18 year old women are physically and emotionally more mature than 18 year old men, but I don't think that's what accounts for the difference (though for sure it's a contributing factor). Just to clarify, we are talking about finding someone sexy here- not that they'd want to go for that in real life. See Donny's post above. We're talking about post-pubescent people here obviously, but in that context, it's just true that men usually find attractive teenagers sexy, and you know that it's not because an 18 year old girl is more developed because straight men also find attractive 16 year old girls sexy and gay men find attractive teenage boys sexy etc forever. And when you do find this among women (it's a lesser tendency but it does exist, see female teachers who like their students etc) they likewise find teenage boys sexy. So let's don't pretend it's about differing maturity levels. The fact is that most men do think of high school aged attractive teenagers as sexy (boy or girls depending on orientation) and most women do not. But when the women do, just like the men, they are not preferring the boys who are more developed (look like they're 25) so this is a false explanation, a cover. It's just that a majority of adults (most men, some few women) find attractive high school aged people to be sexy. And those of us who don't- which is most women- don't look at them and think they are sexy in a fantasy way or in a lizard brain way and then correct for what is reality or socially acceptable or whatever. It's just that when we look at them, we see awkward kids. So it's sort of hard to understand how it's ticking someone else's sexy box.

This can be complicated if you actually have kids that age because you don't want to think of some old person creeping after them and also because you are so used to seeing them as kids that it's a shock to see them as the grown sexual beings they are. And some of us may also remember how gross it was when old people creeped on us when we were that age. I might find 50 year old men hot now, but I remember how extremely UNSEXY they looked to me when I was 18 so I know that's how they see us now, and yuck I don't want to think about anyone seeing me that way! But this woman needs to stop projecting all of that on her seemingly normal boyfriend's seemingly vanilla porn habits. Come back to the real world and look at your man's actual behaviors. My guess is she's gone down this tunnel b/c she's trying to reconcile her complete lack of sexual attraction to teenagers to her fiance's sexual attraction and she's rationalizing it which is fun for conversation but hopeless for any real conclusions. And yes, good question as to how she can be so naive at this age. Based on the fact that there are still people out there who think that porn is cheating or that it's immoral, I'm willing to believe that there are likewise still fully grown adult people who are naive about plenty of aspects of both porn and sexuality. But surely those people aren't likewise fans of this column? So yes, very strange.

75

Seems like getting the daughter's opinion is key. Don't try to put her on her guard (like asking point-blank, "Is my fiancé creeping on you?") but it's basic protocol to check in when bringing someone new into the family. If she's ok with future stepdad, then mom can breathe easy. If on the other hand red flags start going up, pay attention.

76

avast @68 -- good point!

77

I'm glad that so many comments suggested that the BF's behavior with the daughter is worth being aware of. Not that anything about the letter was a red flag, but simply that that is always good advice for every parent.

@72 EmmaLiz
It does get confusing since threads often take on a life of their own. It's pretty common for me not to check in until they do, I often find the evolving discussion more interesting than the original letter.

@73 BiDanFan
"I don't think she should be scolded or mocked for this."

I don't either. IIRC some did. (I don't think I did.)

@74 EmmaLiz
I agreed with every word. Including

"most men do think of high school aged attractive teenagers as sexy (boy or girls depending on orientation)"

though I wasn't eager to put that out there.

78

There is a very big difference between finding someone's body sexy and finding someone sexy. A human being's body (to most people) generally has its highest sexiness potential at or about the time of reaching full physical development. For female humans, on average, this happens a few years before it does for male humans. Hence the whole 'teen' thing for males who are into females. Males take a little longer on average to fill out and firm up. Hence the whole mid 20s thing for women who are into men.

That's just the body, though. So, do I (a middle aged man) find the bodies of young in shape women sexually attractive? Yeah, duh. However, do I find them attractive as a human being I'd like to have some sort of relationship with (physical and otherwise)? God god no! If they aren't still straight up children, then they are babies at being adults. Not interested. Despite that, do I want to watch them have sex on the internet? Yeah, duh. I gotta believe I'm far from being alone on this one.

79

@78 philosophy school dropout
"I gotta believe I'm far from being alone on this one."

I agreed with every word.

80

I honestly don’t find teenage women very physically attractive. Their bodies are not mature. They are round and mushy with their immature bone structures, child like skin and undefined hips. That’s not to say teenagers are ugly or that I don’t understand why people find them attractive but I think most people peak in their 20s. I’m skeptical of the idea that there’s a biological imperative to be attracted to 16 year olds. Women do not reach peak fertility until their 20s, and adolescence is not over until the mid 20s. I suspect the interest in teenagers might be more psychological than physical.

81

@Philosophy, While that's true, it only makes sense when you are talking about a still photo. When I see a group of teenage boys hanging out together or one teenage boy walking down the street, I cannot separate his body (as in what it looks like in a picture or in a performance online) from himself- the way he is moving, the way he is dressed, his hair, how he laughs with his friends or how he talks, etc. So just to clarify, when I said "sexy" I did not, in fact, mean just someone's body and instead I absolutely meant the person (not their personality, but all the things that make someone physically sexy). Again, I understand that there is a difference between fantasy and real life, but a grown man can look at a group of teenage girls (or boys depending on the orientation) and see those girls/boys as sexy- the way they move, the way they dress, the way they interact with their friends, etc. They even seem to like the fact that they are more 'innocent' or more 'naive'. Whereas with women most seem to just see awkwardness and teenage energy which is not sexy at all. When I think of 18 or 19 year old boys, I think of loud rough overeager sticky handed dweebs, and regardless of how nice their bodies might be, I have no interest at all in seeing them fuck. No more so than I do in seeing a wrinkled geriatric man fuck. The kids- I want to cook them dinner and reassure them that things are going to be OK, or if they are mature, I feel a bit of pride for them or goodwill at least. But sexiness? Nope.

But as I said before, the "women mature earlier" thing does not explain the male sexual attraction to teenagers since it is prevalent among gay men as well. And like straight women, there are lesbian women who find teenagers attractive, but this is not prevalent. If it were a matter of physical maturation, then we'd find straight men and lesbians into teenage girls (since they look older) while straight women and gay men were not into teenage boys (since they look younger). I don't think this actually has anything to do with it. I think it's about a combo of the actual differences in male and female sexuality as well as socialization about who/what is attractive.

82

Last Comment, I agree with you absolutely and I would assume that most men would as well. But for decades now, I've had men tell me that they do find teenage women sexy and that this is natural and that it also doesnt mean they want to date them in real life. It would make a lot more sense to me if this turns out to not be true, but I've accepted that it's a male tendency (and sometimes a female tendency though less often). Im skeptical of any biological explanations for complex human behaviors that don't take into account nonbiological factors.

83

@55 I'm concerned we seem to be getting increasing troll crossover from the Slog AM comment cesspool into the SLLotD. I had been thankful and surprised it didn't seem to be happening...

(Sure we've always had "locals" here who trolled sometimes, but that wasn't their purpose in creating accounts, except for the occasional appearance of the seattleblues type of thing.)

84

If I can toss good advice after bad, I'd say, work backwards. Forget about his porn mix, introspect on what it was in your mind that led you to freak out. Was there some gut sense, even if you can't say why, that made you draw the connection to your daughter? Because even if his porn diet is balanced, if the "young brunette" in it pinged some concern for you, it's worth thinking about why that was. You gut isn't infallible especially when it gets hung up on particular things, but when it says something /unusual/ it's well worth listening to.

Or if you decide that the relation to your daughter is more of a post-hoc coloring put onto what's more fundamentally an "OMG are men such horndogs to watch 18-year-olds" response, then yes, we generally are.

The suggestion @44 to ask the daughter how she feels about him... seems's great if you can swing it, but, how would you word that, because I am totally at sea. Don't see how you can ask her flat-out; if that would get an answer she would have told you before now. And it's hard to fish for general "if you have any input about my fiance..." because she knows it's not an adult child's business who you marry. Maybe it works to fish like that because she'll realize you are indirectly asking something serious or you wouldn't have done it?

85

EmmaLiz @81, I highly doubt the videos this man is watching are of teenage girls hanging out at the mall, popping their gum and taking selfies. They're videos of "teenage" girls HAVING SEX and are therefore by definition sexy, or intended to be sexy. Your comparison with teenage boys hanging out on street corners is false; twink porn would be a better parallel. Is twink porn hot? For a lot of people who would not focus on the bodies of their local teenage boys, yes, it is. And it's probable -- the men here can speak for themselves -- that what they see in "teen" porn they do not see in the real teenage girls at the mall, for the same reasons. Just as men who watch MILF porn do not sexualise every middle-aged woman they encounter in real life.

86

Curious @77, your "how could you not get all this?" came across as dismissive and mocking to me. Yes, others were more harsh.

87

EmmaLiz, one of my youngest son’s friends, is tall and has a well developed body, I have a sexual response to him visually, which I keep under wraps of course, because he’s a kid.
Some of these young women, wow. My son’s eighteen yr old gf. Is tall, expressive lovely face, big breasts, chooses great clothes, which don’t hide her breasts and nice butt... and I love looking at her. All that youth and beauty.
My nine yr old grand daughter, long blonde hair, beautiful face, with puppy fat/ weird term that/ she is gorgeous. And already the power of her sexuality is bubbling up.
Women have a lot more work to do thru puperty, than men do.
Men get hairs and sperm kicks in sometime. No wonder boys lag so far behind girls.
The school boys I see around, funny kids. The girls are different. I believe it is a biological dynamic, aided along by commercialism. Over sexualising girls/ young women.
Because the bloom of a ripe womb,
needs no help to be noticed.
I agree with curious. How could she not know what men, in our culture, are like. And what they like. She should not have looked if she couldn’t deal with who this man is, in his inner erotic self.
Can’t blame men if culturally they are bombarded with eroticised young women.
Until Patriarchal Capitalism and commercialism are dialed back, best not to look at what a man gets off on. If any area is a concern, then tell him soon after meeting the areas of porn you don’t want the vibration of around you.
Too late for this woman. So best, she forgets what she saw, relax about it, and marry the guy. She’s found out he is not perfect.
What a surprise.

88

First, to state the obvious, "teenagers" is too big of an umbrella. 18, 19, yes, most men and I find sexy. Younger are absolutely children, physically immature, as such not a bit sexy.

@86 BiDanFan
"dismissive and mocking to me"

Ok, I can see how in writing, without being able to hear tone of voice, it sounded mocking. (As for "dismissive"...dismissing her POV was exactly my plan.)

I was simply trying to be direct enough to get her to focus on the real issue, and that for that she needed to look in the mirror at how (now quoting you @73) "naive" she is on this (thing that, as I wrote @71, it would have been healthy for her to 'get' much younger).

I honestly think that for a 53-year old to not yet 'get' this implies some manner of issue she might benefit from talking with a sex-positive therapist about. I did intend for her to find it a bit jarring to be 'handed a mirror', because I thought that might be the best way to get her to see that she is the one with a problem. But I fully agree it would have been much better if instead I would have written a few sentences laying out what I lazily tried to imply with those 7 words.

I am sorry, LW, for being lazy, and for not writing that so that it couldn't sound mocking. I admit I don't always give my comments enough time to say everything I would wish, and in a gentle way.

89

@87 LavaGirl
I can see how it creates a huge dissonance to love men, and to hate this thing about them, now that as you say

"She’s found out he is not perfect."

But in defense of men, this is normal/natural. I would argue that this does not make us objectively "not perfect". But I can totally see how it is wildly at odds with what women would (subjectively) see as perfect.

I've used the phrase "testosterone poisoning" a lot over the years. But I can still feel good (aka "perfect") about who I am.

(p.s. to my @88) ...at least later in comments threads when I've taken more time to think.

90

Did you read my comment curious? I agree there is a power to young women because they are in their peak fertile years. Our western culture accentuates this.
Personally I’d rather be with a man who watched no porn. I find it a very disconcerting energy, and the men I loved in my youth and the man I was married to managed to be sexual animals without screen porn available at their fingertips.
It’s here now, and women, if they are disturbed by porn or any genres, then they need to own that and state their boundaries. Toxic masculinity is not a fable.

91

LW, if you are disturbed by his porn genre, it’s about you, not your daughter. As we see here, a lot of men lust after young women.
You can reconcile it by accepting it. Or not.
Only you know if the relationship is real and you can get past your response.

92

Curious @89, none of us is perfect, nor is it "normal" or "natural" to be perfect. (I did catch MIA's "he's perfect for me" as another example of her naivete. To her credit, she said "he's perfect FOR ME" rather than "he's perfect," but no one is perfect, either objectively or as a partner for anyone else. But I digress.) Hormones are the enemy of the perfect; testosterone turns otherwise sane and respectful men into porn-loving hornbeasts, while women's monthly cycles turn otherwise sane and respectful women into weepy or grumpy basket cases. Biology eh, who'd have it?

93

@BDF the conversation diverged into topics of whether or not people find older teenagers sexually attractive. We were not exclusively discussing porn nor the LW. Not only do I agree with you regarding the LW, but I'm pretty sure most of the women in the porn actresses he's watching are not really teenagers anyway.

Curious, agree too regarding age (older teens) but 18 is an arbitrary cut off date. I think when people talk about women being fully physically developed, they simply mean if they have developed breasts or not. Ask any girl who developed in middle school. I guess the equivalent would be facial hair on boys?

Re: Curious's dismissive tone, to me it sounded like exasperation, and it is exasperating. It's hard to tell tone online, I usually think I'm being hilarious but Ive been told forever that I'm humorless so I accept that and pretend there's an island culture somewhere that registers funny tone the way I do and one day I'll get shipwrecked there and we'll all laugh. Our online gauge of what is rude or dismissive is sensitive since everyone is so rude and dismissive online, but we're not talking to the LW directly here and it would take a lot of the fun out of it if we had to limit our comments to a tone that would be sensitive to every LW.

How could a 50 year old not get that men find older teenagers attractive? I also don't know (insert exasperated tone) how could she not get it?

I do understand the discomfort with this fact- I feel it myself, Lava has described it well- but to not know at all? It is a curious situation, would like to know what happened to get her to that age without ever having noticed this. Maybe some old dude creeped on her when she was a teen and she's divided men up into bad / good depending not on their behavior but on whether or not they find teens attractive? For the rest of us, the division is on actions not on private fantasies. That's not a split that comes natural to a lot of people. But again, her struggle seems to be the sudden realization that grown men look at porn of older teenagers which does seem extremely sheltered and naive, beyond belief, in a 50 something year old, especially one that knows Dan Savage exists. It's is compellingly exasperatingly odd.

94

@90 LavaGirl
"Did you read my comment curious?"

Absolutely. (I didn't find anything else to disagree with.)

"Personally I’d rather be with a man who watched no porn."

What makes you think that's not misguided? (Even assuming they /actually/ don't watch porn...)
What makes you think that the /reason/ they don't watch porn is something positive/healthy, instead of it being the case that they're atypical/not normal for an unhealthy reason?

95

@94 p.s.
The only reason I posed that as a question is that I don't have evidence that guys that don't watch porn are unhealthy. But I do know that I'm not toxic, and so I don't think guys watching porn needs to be in the slightest most minute way unhealthy.

96

EmmaLiz @93, thanks. Your post didn't seem relevant, though I did realise after responding to it that it might help shed light on the (typical) female thought process that some men here can't comprehend, ie why it wouldn't occur to a (typical) woman that men would find very young women sexually arousing. Personally, I agree with you; I am not interested in porn because I find (certain) people sexy, rather than finding the watching of sex acts arousing. I would rather look at fully clothed photos/videos of someone I find attractive than watch people I don't find attractive having sex. I understand this is not a preference everyone shares, nor should I expect them to or think my arousal-buttons are superior to others'.

The flip side of "how could she not get it?" is of course "how could he not get that she wouldn't get it?"

97

BDF as for how he could not get that she doesn't get it, maybe they really are perfect for each other after all?

Regarding the relevance of the conversation about attraction to teens, my point (ok I'll try to be brief) is that the porn is not really the issue. Nor is any real world concern about consequences (she did not say she is worried he will creep on her daughter even though that is how it was interpreted by many of us). It's not about the porn. It's about the fact that she finds it discomforting that he finds teenagers attractive. The porn is just evidence of this. So push that aside- the issue to highlight is how a woman who sees teenagers in a maternal way deals with the fact that her man sees them as sexual beings. You'll notice this is what Dan responded to as well with his talk about reptilian brains and noticing attractive young people in real life. To this point, I think it's a red herring to say stuff like "porn isn't real life", "women develop faster than men" or "we are attracted to their physical bodies not them as people". While all those things may be true, none of them speak to the reality that men do tend to see attractive teenagers as sexually attractive (assuming they don't know them really and also with full knowledge that most of them keep this in the realm of fantasy)

98

discomfiting

99

@94 curious. I don’t know enough about the effect of screen porn to have an opinion, re how healthy it is. Mine is an aesthetic choice.
I’d never tell a man he couldn’t watch porn. The mind suited men to create fantasy, till screen porn was developed. Yes men would look at pictures in porn mags to get off. Stills are not the same as moving pictures.